Gloria Trevi’s mixed emotions: Gloria Trevi's special award coincided with two important family occasions. Feb. 18, aside from being the Premio Lo Nuestro date, was also her son's Angel Gabriel birthday, and Trevi took the opportunity to sing "Las Mananitas'' for Billboard's Instagram feed (watch below). At the same time, Trevi's other son, Miguel Armando, was diagnosed with COVID-19. "I almost canceled my appearance," Trevi confessed. Lucky for us, she didn't, and her son is already doing better.
Jay Wheeler will sing in English: Jay Wheeler, one of Billboard’s Latin Artists to Watch in 2021, revealed that he’s working on an English-language album. “It’s something different and a dream I had as a kid,” he tells Billboard. Wheeler promised collaborations with mainstream acts, including Post Malone’s artist Tyla Yaweh.
Lenny Tavarez’s exclusive announcement: Wheeler was not the only person who talked about a new album on the carpet: Reggaeton artist Lenny Tavarez also shared exclusive news with Billboard. “Krack is the most commercial album I’ve done and my debut as a solo artist,” he said of his upcoming album, which will be released as a series with four new songs each month. “‘TBT’ is a romantic reggaeton with Brytiago, ‘Discipulos’ with Dalex, ‘Enfermados de Riqueza’ a corrido tumbao with Natanael Cano, and Ovi, and the focus tracks ‘A Cien’ -- they are all dropping this month.”
Chiquis’ dream bilingual collaborations: The Weeknd and Rosalia, Selena Gomez and Rauw Alejandro -- bilingual collaborations are totally a thing. For Chiquis, her dream is to one day collaborate with Gwen Stefani and Jay-Z. “Gwen is my all-time favorite. I’d love to do an empowering rock song for women. And I like rap, so I’d like to work with Jay-Z,” she said. “I have to reach for the stars, so I’m manifesting it now!”
Nio Garcia’s fashion: Nio Garcia was sporting pink hair and a heavy gold pendant with a giant alligator head swallowing Garcia's head. "Yes, that's me!" he said with a laugh. But he admitted the pendant was so heavy, it had actually scraped his skin to the point of bleeding during rehearsal. "I'm getting a redesign," he said.
Arthur Hanlon’s promising 2021: During the awards ceremony, pianist Arthur Hanlon performed alongside Yuri, Alejandra Guzman and Lila Downs for a memorable Armando Manzanero tribute. On the magenta carpet, he revealed he has an album with other Latin divas coming out this year. “It’s called Piano y Mujer and it’s with Kany Garcia, Natalia Jimenez, Goyo from Chocquibtown, Evaluna Montaner and Nella,” he said, adding that an HBO special is also on the way. “COVID brought a different type of energy. I was in my studio creating music and one thing led to another.”
COVID-safe awards show: Backstage, artists such as Nathy Peluso were sitting pretty in the waiting area following makeup retouches, wearing clear plastic shields provided to afford protection while keeping makeup intact. Production was also distributing N95 masks to everyone on the carpet and sanitizing all areas at all times in order to guarantee COVID protection for the media and artists. Everyone present also had to take a COVID test to be able to attend the event Thursday night.
(Editor's Note: Hanlon is married to Billboard VP/Latin industry lead Leila Cobo.)